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“Being There”

Hal Ashby’s classic 1979 film adaptation of Jerzy Kosiński’s 1970 novel of the same name,

depicting "presidential material" before elections.







International Women’s Day 2018

Grenoble, France


Dear Colleagues and Friends of CEIMSA,


Today, around the world, the slave/master relationship is being challenged by millions of women and their male allies, all asking the same question:



Image result for international women's day






We at CEIMSA remain in solidarity with this movement, which has evolved much over recent years.



The 23 items below provide information and analysis of contemporary events which can only complement and strengthen today’s movement against Patriarchy and its cultural matrix of neo-liberal corporate capitalism.




Francis Feeley


Professor emeritus of American Studies

University Grenoble-Alpes

Director of Research

University of Paris-Nanterre

Center for the Advanced Study of American Institutions and Social Movements

The University of California-San Diego





‘Blowback’ Is Real, and We’re Living Through It

Trump Climate Change


by Tom Engelhardt


When it comes to unintended consequences of American policy, Donald Trump is just the tip of the iceberg.





Michael Hudson On Trump’s Plan

to Impose Steel & Aluminum Tariffs


Video and Transcript By Democracy Now





Putin Unveils New Russian Nuclear Missile,

Says It Renders Defenses 'Useless'



Posted March 01, 2018


"I want to tell all those who have fueled the arms race over the last 15 years, sought to win unilateral advantages over Russia, introduced unlawful sanctions aimed to contain our country's development ... you have failed to contain Russia," he said.
He accused the West of "ignoring us. Nobody listened to us. Well listen to us now."





Putin’s State of the Union


by Paul Craig Roberts


Putin has given a remarkable address to the Federal Assembly, the Russian People, and the peoples of the world.

In his speech Putin revealed the existence of new Russian nuclear weapons that make it undisputably clear that Russia has vast nuclear superiority over the United States and its pathic NATO vassal states.
In view of the Russian capabilities, it is not clear that the US any longer qualifies as a superpower.

There is little doubt in my mind that if the crazed neoconservatives and military/security complex in Washington had these weapons and Russia did not, Washington would launch an attack on Russia.

Putin, however, declared that Russia has no territorial ambitions, no hegemonic ambitions, and no intention to attack any other country. Putin described the weapons as the necessary response to the West’s firm refusal year after year to accept peace and cooperation with Russia, instead surrounding Russia with military bases and ABM systems.







Putin Trumps Trump


by Eric S. Margolis


In December, 2002, President George W. Bush proclaimed that the US would unilaterally pull out of the 1972 Anti-Ballistic Missile Treaty that had curtailed the development of nuclear missiles and anti-missile systems to defeat them. The arrogant, dim-witted Bush believed that US space technology was advancing so rapidly that it would neutralize Russia’s force of ICBM missiles. Bush was just a puppet. The real power behind him was Vice President Dick Cheney, the leading neocon who sneered at Russia, dismissed it as a mere ‘gas-station,’ and was determined to see the US achieve global dominance.  In Cheney’s view, the ABM Treaty was holding the US back from this goal. Bankrupt Moscow would never be able to stand up to the mighty USA. Moscow warned that reneging on the ABM Treaty would re-ignite a ruinous arms race. A then little known politician, Vladimir Putin, vowed that Russia would never bend its knee to the US nuclear colossus. This week, President Putin stunned the world by revealing a new arsenal of nuclear-armed weapons that have stolen a march on Washington and left the warlike President Donald Trump looking foolish.





Are You Listening, America?


by Scott Ritter


Don’t you understand what I’m trying to say?
And can’t you feel the fears I’m feeling today?
If the button is pushed, there’s no running away,
There’ll be no one to save with the world in a grave,
Take a look around you, boy, it’s bound to scare you, boy,
And you tell me over and over and over again my friend,
Ah, you don’t believe we’re on the eve of destruction.
—Barry McGuire, “Eve of Destruction,” 1965


From 2002 until 2011, Paul Marcarelli, perhaps better known to American audiences as Verizon’s “test guy,” made a career starring in television commercials, wandering the width and breadth of the United States, holding a phone to his ear and asking the simple question, “Can you hear me now?” Verizon was, and is, in the communications business in which the ability to send a message is only as good as the corresponding ability to receive it. On Thursday, Vladimir Putin, Russia’s much-maligned president, delivered his state of the nation address to the Russian Federal Assembly (the Russian national Legislature, consisting of the State Duma, or lower house, and the Russian Council, or upper house). While the first half of his speech dealt with Russian domestic issues—and any American who has bought into Western media perceptions that Russia is a collapsing state, possessing a failed economy, would do well to read this portion of the speech—it was the second half of the presentation that caused the world to sit up and listen.




‘Nuclear war between Russia and US

will bring end to civilization’

‘Nuclear war between Russia and US will bring end to civilization’



By training its European allies to use their nuclear arms, the US is moving towards an atomic war with Russia, forgetting that it would mean the end of the human civilization, retired Lieutenant General Evgeny Buzhinsky told RT.


The US military is preparing the armed forces of the European countries for the use of tactical nukes against Russia, Sergey Lavrov, the Russian Foreign Minister, said on Wednesday. He added that the presence of American non-strategic nuclear weapons in Europe is a major stumbling block in the path of disarmament.

“No one can say how serious the threat really is” from the US actions, Buzhinsky, the Chairman of the Executive Board of the PIR-Center, said. However, he pointed out that “the military people are getting ready. The Russian military is preparing and the American military does the same. And it’s for the politicians to warn the public that such preparations are being made.”






Michael Parenti - Lies, War, and Empire (2007)



Dr. Michael Parenti on "Lies, War, and Empire" given May 12, 2007 at Antioch University in Seattle.





'Ukraine on Fire': Oliver Stone Documentary

Finally Available in the West




Covered by Western media as a people's revolution, it was in fact a coup d'état scripted and staged by nationalist groups and the U.S. State Department.

"The film was originally released in 2016, but unsurprisingly, Stone came up against problems distributing the film in the US and western countries. A Russian-dubbed version was available almost immediately and was aired on TV in Russia, but people in the 'free world' were left without access to the full film."





Occupation 101

Voices Of The Silenced Majority



An award-winning documentary film on the root causes of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.


The film covers a wide range of topics -- which include -- the first wave of Jewish immigration from Europe in the 1880's, the 1920 tensions, the 1948 war, the 1967 war, the first Intifada of 1987, the Oslo Peace Process, Settlement expansion, the role of the United States Government, the second Intifada of 2000, the separation barrier and the Israeli withdrawal from Gaza, as well as many heart wrenching testimonials from victims of this tragedy.





Australian film ‘Stone Cold Justice’ on Israel’s torture

of Palestinian children



A film which has been produced by a group of Australian journalists has sparked an international outcry against Israel after it explicitly detailed Tel Aviv's use of torture against Palestinian children.
The film, titled ‘Stone Cold Justice’ documents how Palestinian children, who have been arrested and detained by Israeli forces, are subjected to physical abuse, torture and forced into false confessions and pushed into gathering intelligence on Palestinian activists. Australia's foreign minister Julie Bishop has spoken out against Israeli's use of torture stating that “I am deeply concerned by allegations of the mistreatment of Palestinian children,” Israel's Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor has described the human rights abuses documented in the film as “intolerable”. But rights groups have slammed this statement, saying that the Israelis are doing nothing to change Tel Aviv's policy to torture Palestinian children. Last year a report by the United Nations International Emergency Children's Fund or UNICEF concluded that Palestinian children are often targeted in night arrests and raids of their homes, threatened with death and subjected to physical violence, solitary confinement and sexual assault. The film Stone Cold Justice has sparked an international outcry about Israel's treatment of children in Israeli jails. However, rights groups have criticized Tel Aviv for not doing anything to create a policy that protects Palestinian children against arbitrary arrest and torture.





Fake History. How The Money Power Controls Our Future

By Controlling Our Past



by Jim Macgregor and Gerry Docherty


The ‘Fake History’ and ‘Fake News’ pejoratives (like ‘Conspiracy Theory’ before them) have only recently entered common parlance, but the falsification of history and news reporting is as old as history itself. For many a long year television news channels and newspapers owned or controlled by the Money Power (including the British Broadcasting Corporation), have been feeding us a daily diet of fake information. But in a black is white Orwellian reversal of truth it is the very people spreading falsehood who hurl the ‘fake news’ and ‘fake history’ pejoratives at truth tellers. To maintain control and stem dissent, the ruling elites maliciously misrepresent and question the integrity of alternative media and non-corporate news sources which broadcast genuine news, and the honest revisionist historians who relate historical truths. George Orwell suggested in his ‘war is peace’, ‘freedom is slavery’, ‘ignorance is strength’ thesis that the masses fall for the ruling power’s lies because their critical thinking has been so repressed they will believe any absurdity in contradiction of the plain facts.

Orwell famously added: ‘Who controls the past controls the future.’ Fake history is a weapon wielded by ruling elites to exert control over us, for it is knowledge about the past that has the power to shape us as people and develop our comprehension of reality. True history reveals to those who care to learn that democracy is a sham; that we the people are akin to Orwellian proles in Oceania watched over by Big Brother and accepting of anything he cares to tell us or throw at us. Money Power control of the received history is crucially important (more so than control of fake news) because it enables them to keep us in the dark and ensure our ongoing subservience. After almost seventy years Orwell’s observation may appear somewhat clichéd, but it is now more relevant than ever. The highly perceptive author added: ‘The most effective way to destroy people is to deny and obliterate their own understanding of their history.’





Is MSNBC Now the Most Dangerous Warmonger Network?


by Norman Somomon


The evidence is damning. And the silence underscores the arrogance.

More than seven weeks after a devastating report from the media watch group FAIR, top executives and prime-time anchors at MSNBC still refuse to discuss how the network’s obsession with Russia has thrown minimal journalistic standards out the window.





Wacky Weather: Bitter Cold Winter Link to 'Arctic Warming'



Scientists say soaring record North Pole and Arctic temperatures which have never been this extreme, are disrupting polar jet stream, plunging Europe into a bitter winter. This is replay of interview with atmospheric scientist Dr. Jennifer Francis, on the warming Arctic's effect on polar jet stream and extreme cold across U.S. The same principles apply.

The jet stream travels around the northern hemisphere, again, this river of fast moving wind, and it has these big north-south waves in it. By separating that cold air to the north from the warm air to the south, if the jet stream is south of you then, you'll be in the cold air. And the opposite is true if it's north of you. Well, those waves in the jet stream are actually what create the stormy weather and the nice weather that we experience from time to time. So what you might surmise, then, is that whatever's going on with the jet stream around you is really what's controlling your weather. So anything that affects the jet stream, then, is also going to affect your weather.





“Operating Costs”


by Mr. Fish






The Shooting At Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School In Parkland Florida


by Paul Craig Roberts


Readers have inquired about my silence about the Florida shooting on Valentine’s Day. The answer is that school shootings are not my expertise. Moreover, a country, such as the US, which no longer has an independent TV and print national media, is unable to find out and is dependent on the story told by authorities. Although it is probably impossible to find out what happened, independent Internet media makes it possible for a person willing to invest the time and effort, to arrive at a conclusion on their own. Here are some of the things to think about.

A Parkland FL Stoneman Douglas high school teacher says the school had been told there would be a code red drill. When he heard shooting, he assumed it was the drill.





By Day, a Sunny Smile for Disney Visitors.

By Night, an Uneasy Sleep in a Car.



by Jennifer Medina


ANAHEIM, Calif. — On Disneyland’s Main Street, Emily Bertola spends hours working on her feet, embroidering names onto mouse ears at the Mad Hatter shop, where she has been an employee for the last two years. She usually offers visitors the sunny smile she was trained to give.

None of her customers know that for months, she slept in the back of her truck, showering at the park before her shift.

Her struggle is hardly unique to Disneyland.

Orange County is known for its affluence, and for its tourist industry. But the thousands of workers who keep its resorts, restaurants and hotels running are sometimes struggling to stay afloat.





Mind Blowing Corruption At FBI - NSA Whistleblower Reveals


by Jimmy Dore and William Binney


NSA Whistleblower Exposes U.S. Government Corruption





From: Richard Wolff
Sent: Monday, 5 March, 2018
Subject: My latest on Trump's Budget

rdwolff.com and democracyatwork.info.

Dear Friends,

Thought this piece on Trump's proposed budget might be of interest; it is attached and also below. Please feel free to recirculate.

Richard D. Wolff



Trump's Budget: Fiddling as Capitalism Burns

Monday, March 05, 2018

By Richard D. Wolff,

Truthout | Op-Ed


The Trump budget proposal now before Congress mostly consists of the classic GOP wish list accompanying the usual heavily ideological silences. Logically and consistently, it follows December's massive tax cuts, which will chiefly benefit corporations and the rich (with small cuts for middle and working-class people to provide political cover). It stresses increased military spending. It proposes cuts to various social services, especially those geared toward the most needy people, and includes direct attacks on the Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid programs. While the final budget will differ from Trump's proposal, the initial proposal marks another step in shifting the costs of capitalism's profit-driven global move to new centers (China, India, etc.) onto the mass of people in the old centers such as the US.


This reaffirmation of traditional GOP priorities continues Trump's drive to position himself as the one Republican who can achieve the party's goals, while minimizing compromises with Democrats (except on deficit spending). The budget and the December tax cut have solidified his support among corporations and the rich who might otherwise have reacted negatively to his exaggerated appeals to white supremacists, evangelicals, super patriots and other less mainstream groups.


The Trump/GOP budget will result in huge deficits of the sort the GOP has usually used to attack Democrats.

The fact that his policies will continue to deepen the inequality of US capitalism does not seem to matter to Trump and his supporters, including both religious fundamentalists and corporate leaders. Then again, it did not matter much to the Obama, Bush or Clinton administrations either. Trump does not bother to express condemnation of inequality, as Obama did, but both administrations enabled the intensification of this inequality. Ironically, worsening inequality provided the Trump campaign with crucial electoral support from some of its angry victims. He must now worry about attracting to himself the same blame for inequality that dogged his predecessors and Hilary Clinton. Among the top presidential contenders of 2016, only Bernie Sanders wielded sustained outrage at deepening inequality, with that outrage functioning as a key pillar of his ongoing popularity.


Meanwhile, the Trump/GOP budget will result in huge deficits of the sort the GOP has usually used to attack Democrats. This political role reversal underscores the basic irrelevance of the substance of deficit debates. These debates' ostensible objects -- the costs versus benefits of governmental budget deficits -- were not their primary purpose. Their purpose was, rather, to keep attention, criticism and political action away from capitalism's intrinsic instability and to prevent challenges to the system itself.


Capitalism's irrational and destructive business cycle downturns, coming at four- to seven-year intervals on average, have wasted vast resources and typically hurt millions. For example, downturns such as those of 1974 and 1987 might well have provoked accumulating systemic criticisms. To preclude that, cyclical downturns have operated as triggers for the GOP and Dems to rehash their policy differences. This rehashing has amounted to an endlessly repeated debate over larger or smaller budget deficits versus greater or lesser austerities as the alternative ways to respond to cyclical downturns. More radical policy responses -- socialization of the means of production or transition from hierarchical to democratic (worker coop) enterprise organizations -- are almost never considered or debated in mainstream policy spheres.


Capitalism's instability has never been overcome. It has only ever been "managed."


Managing instability has proved to be very profitable to corporations and the rich, as it will be once again as a result of whatever form of the Trump budget passes through Congress. This management process will consist of four steps. Step one was the massive tax cuts doled out to corporations and the rich. Step two is underway: GOP military spending increases, plus compromises with Democrats to enable at least some state social programs to be sustained or even allowed to grow. Step three will likely be a shortfall between (reduced) tax revenues and government expenditures: the deficit that requires government borrowing. Finally, we have step four: Washington borrows to fund its deficit.

The federal government draws loans heavily from corporations and the rich since the mass of people lack the funds to lend. Thus, corporations and the rich take the money they no longer have to pay in taxes to Washington and instead lend it to Washington. Those privileged social groups have thus successfully substituted interest-earning loans to the government for the taxes they formerly paid. How very nice for them. Capitalists impose the intrinsic instability of their system on the entire population, and then get the government to respond with deficits that benefit and reward the capitalists. The absurdity of such an economic "policy" is exceeded only by its gross injustice.


The budget assaults the standard of living for the 99% now and in the future. It stifles children's futures.

Silence about systemic injustice is a hallmark of modern capitalist budgets, and Trump's is no exception. Consider the property tax, a seriously unfair institution about which Trump offers nothing but silence. Taxes on the value of property owned in the US are levied almost exclusively on "real" or "tangible" property. This includes land, buildings, business inventories, vehicles, and so on. Property taxes fall on the value of property, whereas income taxes fall on whatever income may be generated by that property. Such tangible property taxes are levied mostly by local governments in the US. In stark contrast, intangible property -- stocks and bonds, for example  -- is utterly free of any property tax in the US. How very nice for the richest among us who, of course, own the bulk of wealth held in such intangible forms. A federal intangible property tax would be an easy, quick way to reduce economic inequality: no wonder neither Trump nor either party leadership said one word about it.

The tax side of the Trump/GOP budget is no less crude and provocative than are Trump's tweets and unscripted asides. The budget unabashedly serves the corporations and the rich while offering lip service or trivial crumbs for the mass of people. It is thus vulnerable to a serious, public campaign against it. Yet, as remarkable as any other aspect of the Trump/GOP budget is its lack of a strong, serious opposition. Why hasn't there been a large-scale attack against so unjust and biased a budget?


In opposing the GOP's unjust economic policy, the Democrats limit themselves to words. Some are contained in longish policy documents few will read or understand. Others take the form of sound bites about one or another detail, without addressing the larger injustices.


What is needed is vast street action, in which masses of the public confront the corporate leaders and superrich who would reap the benefits of what the Trump/GOP budget proposes. Such confrontations would need to emphasize that the Trump/GOP budget is committed to deepen inequality. It is the 1% putting more distance between them and the rest of us. The budget assaults the standard of living for the 99% now and in the future. It stifles children's futures. It follows four decades of growing inequality with measures that will exacerbate that inequality. And it represents the successful use of the 1%'s money to buy and corrupt the political parties, so that a politics of the streets needs to supplement or supplant the traditional party politics. Strikes, demonstrations and disruptions could make these points count politically.


The Democratic Party would confront an existential crisis in the face of such a street-based, budget-focused politics. It would have to choose between two different strategies. It could join and help to lead a politics of real opposition to the budget. Or it could continue on its current path and risk the kind of irrelevance and plunging electoral support experienced by the social democratic parties of Europe over recent years (especially in Greece, France, Italy and Germany). The Democratic Party lost voters to Reagan, the Bushes and now Trump. A substantial number of those voters switched at least in part over what the Democrats -- self-proclaimed friends of working people -- promised but decreasingly delivered.


Saving capitalism from itself was less than what we needed in the 1930s and is much more inadequate now.

The Party leadership is not currently mounting a strong opposition to the Trump/GOP assault on workers' standards of living. Failure to do that risks further exposure of its incapacity to protect -- let alone advance -- those standards. A Democratic Party presenting itself as "at least not as bad as the GOP" is the weakest possible basis for its future. Even the Bernie Sanders insurgency will not offer escape from this crisis, if Sanders continues to combine a critique of inequality that avoids linking it to capitalism with loyalty to a party that insists on celebrating capitalism at every turn.

The Trump/GOP budget proposal teaches yet another important lesson to those willing to learn. It delivers billions (in tax cuts, deregulations and subsidies) to the major shareholders and the top executives whose donated millions fund the politicians who vote that budget into law. Capitalism's political economy is now robotically focused on turning the US into a parallel of its 1870-1929 dimensions: vast accumulating wealth overseeing a vast army of impoverished workers and farmers. That project ended badly in the Great Depression, and the New Deal went a long way toward undoing the accumulated inequality. That set the stage for a renewal of capitalist dynamism after the war.


However, this time, the crash ("Great Recession") of 2008 did not undo the accumulated inequality; quite the opposite. The Trump/GOP budget proposal exemplifies that opposite. Hence the historical irony: It was a strong, mass, public opposition in the 1930s, built on the CIO [Congress of Industrial Organizations] labor movement, plus the socialists and the communists, that forced FDR and the Democrats to save capitalism by undoing its self-destructive accumulated inequality. After 1945, big business and the rich used primarily the GOP and, secondarily, the Democrats to destroy the New Deal coalition while resuming the drive to ever-deepening inequality.

The 2008 crash generated no strong, mass, sustained public opposition. Courageous beginnings in the Occupy Wall Street movement were repressed by prominent representatives of both parties: President Obama nationally and Mayor Bloomberg in New York City. No New Deal-type coalition has arisen to reverse the deepening inequality and thereby save capitalism from its self-delegitimation. The absence of such a coalition reflects a growing recognition that saving capitalism from itself was less than what we needed in the 1930s and is much more inadequate now. Increasingly, we know that going beyond capitalism is the lesson of our history and that a program for constructing a very different next system is central to assembling the coalition to get us there.


Richard D. Wolff is professor of economics emeritus at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, where he taught economics from 1973 to 2008. He is currently a visiting professor in the Graduate Program in International Affairs of the New School University, New York City. He also teaches classes regularly at the Brecht Forum in Manhattan. Earlier he taught economics at Yale University (1967-1969) and at the City College of the City University of New York (1969-1973). In 1994, he was a visiting professor of economics at the University of Paris (France), I (Sorbonne).





From: Monty Kroopkin

Sent: Tue, 06 Mar 2018

Subject: strike fund & info: Wildcat strike by teachers in West Virginia



Fellow Workers, Friends,

You may want to share this around:


·        WV Teachers Strike Support Fund      https://www.gofundme.com/wv-teachers-strike-fund


·        The Real News Network, "Defying Union Leadership, West Virginia Teachers Return to the Picket Lines"     http://therealnews.com/t2/story:21236:Defying-Union-Leadership%2C-West-Virginia-Teachers-Return-to-the-Picket-Lines


·        Jacobin, "The Strike Is On: An interview with Jay O'Neal"     https://jacobinmag.com/2018/02/west-virginia-teachers-strike-activist-interview


·        San Diego Free Press, "West Virginia Teachers Show Why Unions Matter | Womens History Month"      https://sandiegofreepress.org/2018/03/west-virginia-teachers-show-why-unions-matter-womens-history-month/


·        In These Times, "West Virginia Teachers Are Now Out on a Wildcat Strike. The Labor Movement Should Follow Their Lead"    http:/inthesetimes.com/working/entry/20955/west_virginia_teachers_strike_wildcat 


·        Democracy Now, "From Coal Miners to Teachers: West Virginia Continues to Lead Radical Labor Struggle in the U.S."     https://www.democracynow.org/2018/3/5/from_coal_miners_to_teachers_west 


in solidarity,

Monty Kroopkin

IWW San Diego branch






The Xi Silk Road is Here to Stay


by Pepe Escobar

Xi's extended tenure could embody the guarantee China needs to continue its anti-corruption purge and guide the ongoing economic reorientation.



Legalizing Tyranny



by Chris Hedges


The students I teach in prison who have the longest sentences are, almost without exception, the ones who demanded a jury trial. If everyone charged with a crime had a jury trial, the court system would implode. Prosecutors, defense attorneys and judges use those who insist on a jury trial—often people who did not commit the crime with which they were charged—as examples. Their sentences, frequently life sentences, are grim reminders as to why it is in the best interests of a defendant, even if he or she did not commit the crime, to take a plea agreement. Ninety-four percent of state-level felony convictions and 97 percent of federal felony convictions are the result of guilty pleas. And studies by groups such as Human Rights Watch confirm the punitive nature of jury trials: Those who go to jury trials get an addition 11 years, on average, tacked on to their sentences. The rich get high-priced lawyers and lengthy jury trials. The poor are shipped directly to jail or prison.




Boycott, Divest, Sanction: Stopping Zionist Genocide Against the Palestinians

by Francis Boyle

University of Illinois College of Law professor Francis Boyle speaks to the grave injustice that is the treatment of the Palestinian people both within the West Bank and Gaza, as well as within Israel proper. Dr Boyle areas of expertise include Constitutional Law, Human Rights, Jurisprudence, and U.S. Foreign Affairs. You wouldn’t want to miss this opportunity to hear from a man whose served as counsel to the Palestinian Authority and various other countries in the International Criminal square.






Syrian civil defence volunteers, known as the White Helmets, search for survivors following reported government airstrike on the rebel-held neighbourhood of Tishrin, on the northeastern outskirts of the capital Damascus